Interesting Reading to learn English -intermediate - advanced (B1, B2, C1,)
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Rescooped by Aulde de B from Kiosque du monde : Asie!

Color Photographs of Imperial Russia Reveal a World Lost to History : vibrant photos of the pre-Soviet Russian Empire - Smithsonian

Color Photographs of Imperial Russia Reveal a World Lost to History : vibrant photos of the pre-Soviet Russian Empire - Smithsonian | Interesting Reading to learn English -intermediate - advanced (B1, B2, C1,) |

"At Paris' Zadkine Museum, explore vibrant photos of the pre-Soviet Russian Empire..."


"In the early 20th century, two events changed Russia—and the world—forever: World War I and the Bolshevik Revolution.

There to capture Russia's way of life right before the change from a large, but isolated, agrarian society to an increasingly industrialized one was photographer Sergei Mikhailovich Prokudin-Gorskii.


In the early 1900s, Prokudin-Gorskii mapped out a plan for a photographic survey of the Russian Empire, a plan that won the support of Tsar Nicholas II.


Between 1909 and 1915, Prokudin-Gorskii crisscrossed the Russian Empire via train, taking photographs of 11 different regions. 150 of his photographs are now on display to the public in Paris' Zadkine Museum, to commemorate what would have been Prokudin-Gorskii's 150th birthday. 


Educated as a chemist, Prokudin-Gorskii studied with leading color photography experts in St. Petersburg, Berlin and Paris.


Through his inventive tinkering, he created a new method for producing vibrant color film slides. Prokudin-Gorskii created color images by exposing one oblong glass plate three times, in rapid succession, through three different color filters: red, green and blue.

He then presented these color images in slides by projecting the three different color images through three different lenses, one on top of another. When the three images were projected in concert, a full color image could be seen.


 Using this new method, Prokudin-Gorskii took over 2,000 images of the Empire, capturing everything from people to architecture to the Empire's expanding industrial infrastructure.


The images truly represent a lost world: many of the buildings that Prokudin-Gorskii photographed were destroyed in the Bolshevik Revolution.


The photos also show the wide ethnic diversity of the Russian Empire, from photographs of young peasant Russian girls to a series of images of Uzbek men and women.


The complete canon of Prokudin-Gorskii's work was purchased by the Library of Congress from his sons in 1948. You can view more of his work online through the Library of Congress's website.

The exhibit in Paris is on display through May 18, 2014. Admission to the main museum is free, but the exhibit itself carries a €4 (about $5.50) fee."

Via musée du quai Branly - Jacques Chirac
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Rescooped by Aulde de B from Brainfriendly, motivating stuff for ESL EFL learners!

Atlas of True Names

Atlas of True Names | Interesting Reading to learn English -intermediate - advanced (B1, B2, C1,) |

The Atlas of True Names reveals the etymological roots, or original meanings,
of the familiar terms on today's maps of the World, Europe, the British Isles and the United States.

For instance, where you would normally expect to see the Sahara indicated,
the Atlas gives you "The Tawny One", derived from Arab. es-sahra “the fawn coloured, desert”.


Seth Dixon's insight:

This is a fun set of maps that forces us to reexamine the historical linguistic roots of place names.  Many toponyms have a complicated histories so the actual root of the name is not always a single straightforward translation as shown in these maps.  As you explore these maps, most readers will find something the they would dispute, correct, or want to see contextualized more but all in all, it is a fun set of maps.

Via Seth Dixon, Aulde de Barbuat
John Blunnie's curator insight, July 2, 2013 11:12 AM

True names give these maps a unique and historic twist.

Carol Thomson's curator insight, July 17, 2013 4:57 AM

I loved looking at the map of great britain.  I hope it grabs my pupils' attention as an introduction to maps.

Amy Marques's curator insight, July 31, 2013 7:19 PM

Great to see what the original names where! Especially for those that are similar to its current name and those that are completely irrelevant!

Rescooped by Aulde de B from Brainfriendly, motivating videos to learn English B1 B2 and over (European standard)!

Smarthistory: a multimedia web-book about art and art history A great resource

Smarthistory: a multimedia web-book about art and art history A great resource | Interesting Reading to learn English -intermediate - advanced (B1, B2, C1,) |

About Smarthistory

"Smarthistory at Khan Academy is the leading open educational resource for art history. We make high-quality introductory art history content freely available to anyone, anywhere. Smarthistory is a platform for the discipline where art historians contribute in their areas of expertise and learners come from across the globe. We offer nearly 500 videos and these are being translated into dozens of languages. Dr. Beth Harris and Dr. Steven Zucker created Smarthistory and are the Executive Editors. Videos are also available on and the Khan Academy app. Smarthistory and Khan Academy are 501(c)3 not-for-profit corporations.

About our Merger with Khan Academy
Smarthistory joined Khan Academy in October 2011.  Our missions are perfectly aligned—we are all working toward a “free world-class education for anyone anywhere.” Thanks to this partnership, Steven and Beth work on Smarthistory full-time.

Why We Made Smarthistory
We created Smarthistory in 2005 to provide a richer learning experience than was possible with existing resources. Traditional textbooks are prohibitively expensive for many and do not take advantage of the digital technologies that are reshaping education. For example, textbooks often use only a single image to represent a work of art, they speak with an authoritative but impersonal voice, and they rarely incorporate the many valuable resources that universities, libraries and museums make available. We built Smarthistory to emphasize the experience of looking at art by using unscripted conversations recorded in front of the work of art whenever possible, by incorporating numerous images and video, and by curating links to high-quality resources on the web.

Looking Ahead
We hope that more art historians will contribute essays or audio conversations in their areas of expertise and that together, we can create an outstanding, free resource for teaching and learning the history of art.

Check this out as well

Smarthistory by Rebecca Taylor in the Huffington Post

Smarthistory Rethinks the Art History Textbook Online by March Parry for Wired Campus (Chronicle of Higher Education)

Is Smarthistory the Art History Textbook of the Future? (Huffington Post)

Google Art Project, April 2012

2012 Award for Open Courseware Excellent (given by the Open Courseware Consortium) 

Via Ana Cristina Pratas, Aulde de B
Leoncio Lopez-Ocon's curator insight, October 30, 2013 1:01 PM

Magnífica plataforma multimedia norteamericana para promover la enseñanza de la #historiadelarte. Acceso a más de medio millar de videos.

Rescooped by Aulde de B from Learning outside class!

11 Guerrilla Street Art Greats

11 Guerrilla Street Art Greats | Interesting Reading to learn English -intermediate - advanced (B1, B2, C1,) |
When guerrilla-geographer Daniel Raven-Ellison travels, he always keep his eyes peeled for unexpected works of art that creatively subvert culture, rules, and politics and force us to see...


Not all cultural landscapes are officially sanctioned by city planners or government officials.  These landscapes of resistance are often poignant critiques on society and represent the mulitplicity of voices within places.  There isn't one "Geography" with a capital G of a given place, but many geographies.  Many people and demographic groups interact and use the same place in distinct ways and the meaning of that place is socially mediated within the cultural landscape.   


Tags: art, landscape, culture, place, unit 3 culture.

Via Seth Dixon, The School Aranda
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